New Haven Public Schools holds recruitment fair to combat teacher shortage

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — There are teacher shortages around the country, including in Connecticut. On Thursday night in New Haven, the public school district held a recruitment fair to combat that.

There was a shortage of teachers nationally even before the pandemic, so much so that Governor Ned Lamont signed an executive order designed to allow schools more flexibility to address the shortage.

Representatives of the district’s 40 schools and the district administration were on hand. The superintendent said they are trying to be proactive.

“We’re trying to get ahead of the game and start interviewing. Some of them are being interviewed right now on the spot, in different locations,” said Dr. Iline Tracey, superintendent of New Haven Public Schools. “We have, ranges from special education to content areas, science, mathematics. We’re even taking substitute teachers, if they come in and are seeking for substitute positions.”

She said it can be a revolving door with as many as 150 teachers needing to be replaced on a yearly basis. Some retire or leave for higher-paying teaching positions.

Tracey admitted the challenge can be the fact that it can be difficult to compete with the suburbs with respect to teacher salaries.